Mt. Vernon Register-News

February 11, 2013

Jury selection to begin in Rainey trial

By RICK HAYES
rick.hayes@register-news.com

MT. VERNON - — Jury selection for a Mt. Vernon man previously convicted on sex charges will commence on Wednesday in Jefferson Circuit Court. State's Attorney Doug Hoffman and Assistant State's Attorney Darin Rice will prosecute Albert Rainey, 38, who was charged with two counts of predatory criminal sexual assault of a child in 2006. Hoffman said jury selection will begin on Wednesday, with opening arguments slated to begin on Thursday.

Rainey is being represented by Public Defender Sean Featherstun. Rainey was previously represented by attorney Bob Verhines.

Rainey was initially sentenced in 2007 by Judge Terry Gamber to 27 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections, but the conviction was overturned by the Fifth District Court of Appeals. The charges stem from a November 2006 incident in which Rainey is accused of committing an act of sexual penetration with a then 9-year-old female. Rainey had entered an open plea to the charges, Hoffman reported.

According to the appeal decision, Rainey’s attorney at the time he made his guilty plea negotiated with the Jefferson County Assistant State’s Attorney to plead guilty to one of the two counts, however, the ASA wanted guilty pleas to both counts. Neither the ASA nor Rainey’s attorney at the time told him his pleading would result in consecutive sentences.

The decision states the judge admonished Rainey about possible sentences, “without informing him that his pleas of guilty on two counts ... requires imposition of mandatory consecutive sentences.”

During the sentencing, witnesses testified that Rainey had allegedly also abused and sexually assaulted a 2-year-old and a Department of Child and Family Services investigative report indicated abuse reports against Rainey in 1991 for molestation of another girl and two other children at risk of being abused. There was another DCFS-indicated case of molestation in 1999 allegedly perpetrated by Rainey in addition to the incident which led to the charges in court.

Rainey has been held in Jefferson County custody since his arrest. Following his conviction, he was in IDOC custody, but then transferred back to the county after the appeal decision was rendered.